Not Great, Not Terrible.
I bought this game because it was made by the same people who did Harvest Moon, which I love. I'm sure a lot of people have done the same thing. It seems they didn't go much into detail for story here at all. Basically it thrusts you in with a note saying to come to this address, and then this little animal says that your grandma has passed away and she wants you to run the store. Your character obviously doesn't remember your grandma ever living in this place, and after meeting an old friend you obviously don't remember him either. But later on your little monologues say that you remember enjoying time here as a child and visiting grandma. Not very clear on all of the story now is it? They also lack telling you HOW to do things, they just sort of assume you know how other than the little critter teaching you how to set up shop in the morning. They do have a nice variety of character creation details as usual for a Harvest Moon type game, and you can even collect magazines later on to expand your options on hair and clothing. Stocking your shelves correctly takes detail down to a pin point but you can find a rhythm, though it's kind of tedious even for this type of game. Shops don't have hours listed so you never know when the bakery, or the twin's place is actually going to be open unless you just sort of hang out in front of it all day and wait for someone to enter. There are a good amount of items you can get though if you have the money and that's fun to sell when you have fully stocked shelves, which takes awhile to be able to do. There are lots of characters that move into your town and they're silly and quirky like any Harvest Moon game, only it doesn't really feel like you're earning them to move in. It says in instructions and by the little critter who helps you run the place, that the better your shop does the more people will visit and move into town. But it just sort of happens anyways. You only get 2-3 love candidates for each gender and sadly none of them are really special or have that much personality out of all of the characters in the entire village. For women I know you get Steve, who is the mayors son and your childhood friend that you don't remember. He's alright but he always seems to be pushing you to move to the city to open a chain store? Not really a sweet guy. Shinji is some scientist who is studying the Harvest God, he's really obsessed with it and I don't see how he can have a wife if he's so utterly obsessed with this. And Dexter who is the quiet guy who doesn't seem to understand romance at all, boring. The thing I find worst is that you can't actually close shop/set closed days. Instead you have to leave your doors open and customers will stand at the counter as you go look outside for cut scenes/buy things/talk to people/explore. Also POCHICA(the little critter) IS USELESS. She explains the small tutorial at the beginning and then her usefulness ends. She doesn't explain much after that and she basically talks for you in cutscenes, she won't help you in the store or tend to the counter while you leave and do things, she is absolutely useless and not even entertaining despite her having a little fetch game later on. The game is entertaining on a first play through and I plan to get through all of it, marry, expand completely and etc before trading in the game. But I don't see how it could be fun on a second play through and it will just gather dust on my shelf after that. I'd say it's decent for a single play through if you can handle a game with a few quirks to it, fans of Harvest Moon like me will probably enjoy the first play through and then trade it in to play a real HM game with some actual story and growing to it.
I picked this game up and promptly put it down. It didn't really have any of the appeal of Harvest Moon - and since I'd been excited about this when it was first announced I was very disappointed.
There are faceless villagers milling around, many without even NAMES, and the few villagers that do have faces aren't memorable in any way.
The world seemed large, but mostly empty - with the occasional faceless thing walking around, nothing to pick up, nothing to SEE, and just screen after screen of emptiness. The shop itself didn't offer much enjoyment, and I couldn't really press on more than a few in game days before I gave up.
I wouldn't recommend it.
Buy it pre-owned so that you can return it.
I'm a long time fan of Rune Factory and I have enjoyed several of he Farmer Moon games. If you're expecting a game remotely as enjoyable as either of the above mentioned titles then you should turn away. The game starts off disappointing with virtually no tutorial and what little tutorial they do have doesn't even answer the most basic of questions. The fact that there is no tutorial is the only reason the last appeal got a 2 as opposed to 1 (I spent 8 hours just trying to find out the most basic of information such as how to expand the shop.) The gameplay is very monotonous due to the fact that you are only able to run the shop. You can't farm. You can't mine. You can only run the shop. The worst part is that you don't have much control over the shop either. You can't close the shop mid day so customers will line up waiting to be cashed out. They sadly didn't even add in the possibility of theft to at least give some realism to it. The best way to gain money is to be at your shop at 2 and purchase items from him so that you can resell the items back to your customers at a profit. Moving on from the store even wandering around is a pain due to the fact that for some reason with each area you change to the camera angle randomly changes. If you don't leave the shop you aren't missing much though since there isn't much of a story. The story only really progresses through random events and interactions with other characters are poor at best. The only thing I can say is even half decent regarding this game would be the graphics but a the game looking nice doesn't make it a good game. This is the only game that I have played that is on roughly the same level as the "classic" ET video game. Save yourself the disappointment or at the very least buy it pre-owned so that you can return it.
this game stinks!
I wish I had borrowed this game first. It was terrible. I was so bored. I would give it away in a flash. Bring back the old hometown games
well..... to be honest.
I really am having mixed feelings with this game. I'm like a HUGE Natsume fan not just harvest moon and stuff like that. And it does annoy me that theirs very little help in the game... they just pretty much tell you whats going on and put the shop in front of you. Its kinda complex and confusing. But I have heard rumors of interviews with the creator and he's added a new feature into this game to challenge players and that does interest me (already know what is it but am not spoiling for those who haven't looked into it or gotten that far) It does get annoying for the fact your store doesn't close. so if you gotta go do something you'll have to leave your shop and its open and when your return sometimes there are people standing around in there. As for figuring out to save (read some some people had problems with that) its similar to the new rune factory you just go to your bed/diary beside your bed. you'll get the option for action and then click A then you'll get three options that didn't seem to be a problem for me. I do wish they would of given a better booklet in the game. With at least a little info in it. Over all i do enjoy laying down at night and playing it. Just for not long periods of times....... Though I like it. I guess it all depends on what your into :) Also i actually like the graphics for this its adorable.
What did I just buy??
If you hype a nightmare of a game like this, do not expect to make any new fans Natsume. Placing the Harvest Moon sticker on the cover is completly misleading. It is basically Diner Dash with Harvest Moon graphics. The graphics were alright, the sound was repetitive (not in a good background way), the controls are a complete disaster, the camera was all over the place... Was this thing even tested???
The game really depends on your taste.
I got this game because I thought it would be interesting to run a shop and it was from the creators of Harvest Moon. I have put in around 32 hours into the game since the day I got it on release. I will admit I was disappointed in the beginning. You start off the game with a small store and a few items to sell. You're also just thrown into the game. The little flying rat tells you that your grandma died and you're here to run the store. The game literally starts from there. The game said you can wander around town to find materials but I rarely find anything. The most i find are a few mushrooms and fruit but they spawn every other day. This game is really for people who like putting in a lot of time into games that require merchanting as a main source of income. A majority of the income i make in the game comes from me buying goods from other vendors to sell at a higher price at my store. You have to understand what the people want and have a balance of cheap and expensive items. Although this sounds like a slow pace to make money, there is a odd way to make extra money in your store. To make extra money, you would need to sell a lot of items in a chain of customers. Each customer buys one item so you make them wait in line for seriously long times that a normal person would have complained to the manager of the whole store. Sucks to be them when they find out that YOU are the manager. Now the really bad factors I disliked about this game. 1.) The game lack instructions. Seriously, did they even consider the fact that people want to know how to expand their store? I had to find out myself by talking to the twins at their store. 2.) The stores. They don't have open hours for you to see. You just walk out and HOPE they are open. But remember you have customers lining up at your store because you can't close the thing. 3.) I want to close my store once in a while! You aren't even allowed to close your store. Never. You open at 6am and leave it open until 12am. People will always visit your store even when you are out looking for goods for talking to people. 4.) The camera sucks. You can't control the camera and it changes so suddenly that I run face first into countless walls. 5.) My last issue is the inventory. You can't access your inventory outside of your store. Without this you can't gift items to your friends or would be wife or husband. They completely took out gifting unless you sell the item to them in the store.
Awesome but some things that may bug.
To start off the game has the same graphics as Harvest Moon A New Beginning. At first when you start off it is as confusing as being a second grader learning Algebra. There are no clear instructions in the game as you play. But, I like a challenge so I was fine with it. I feel like the game has a great story line that,unlike all the Harvest Moon games, is very unpredictable. That keeps me very interested in the game. The music in the shop, at first, was pretty awesome. Now I wish there wasn't that chorus of nothing but "lalalalalalala" wasn't in it. One thing that really bugs me is the fact that you can't leave the shop without opening it to customers. It has to be open or you're stuck in the house forever. And when you leave to go do stuff like adventure the complexly huge town you live in, it stays open. Which opens into my next petpeeve about the game. The camera angles. It took forever to get used to them and well, it still get's me. The camera angle changes suddenly and confuses you to death. I like the fact that the game doesn't shove marriage as the top priority too. It would had been nice if there were changing seasons and if after say something really really depressing happens, they don't use the dialog from before it happened. a Character was just crying to death in an event then after it you go to talk to them and it's like "What a wonderful day it is. You should eat some of my crops" . Sadly I would not recomend this game to somebody who can't handle a sudden, out of the blue, tragedy. Personally I love the game to death and will keep it forever. I hope my review helps.
Enjoyable, addictive, confusing
I had big hopes for this as I enjoy the Harvest Moon games. It is just as addictive. It is very fun running and customizing your shop. The core gameplay is solid and a blast. The problem arises from absolutely no hand holding. Like detailed tutorials and a solid lead to advancing plot? Well, this game doesn't. If you are OK with figuring things out for yourself then it's not so bad. Its fun and keeps you playing, thinking just one more item. Gotta sell just one more thing.
If you like Harvest Moon, try it :)
I really love what I've played of this so far. It's super cute, and adorable and i would recommend it to anyone that plays the Harvest Moon or Rune Factory. Don't let so many negative reviews affect your buying decision so soon, give it a chance!